Sunday, August 9, 2009

BEDA Day 9 - Del Rio, Texas

This post is going to be about my home town, Del Rio.

Del Rio is on the Texas-Mexico border and is the county seat of Val Verde County, in the state of Texas. It is a medium sized city with population of 46,682. It's sister city across the border is Ciudad Acuña, in the Mexican state of Coahuila.

The San Felipe Springs, which is the city's water supply, produces 90 million gallons of water a day.In the 18th century, the San Felipe Creek, formed by the springs, were used to irrigate the area. The developing town was being referred to as San Felipe Del Rio, from early Spanish explorers who offered mass there on St. Philips Day in 1635.

In 1883, when a post office was requested, the US Postal Department shorted the name to Del Rio, to avoid confusion with the city of San Felipe de Austin. On November 15, 1911 the city became incorporated.

Del Rio is also home to Laughlin Air Force Base, the busiest pilot training base in the US Air Force. In 1962, it was a U-2 Dragonlady based at Laughlin that took the first photos of land based nuclear missile sites being constructed in Cuba. These photos were the intelligence that started the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Another great feature of Del Rio is the Amistad Reservoir. Also referred to as Lake Amistad, the reservoir was formed in November 1969 by the construction of the Amistad Dam.The dam provided flood control, water conservation, irrigation, hydroelectric power, and recreation.

The lake is bound by Val Verde County on the Texas side of the border and the state of Coahuila on the Mexican side of the border. The dam and lake are managed jointly by the US and Mexican government. Amistad is the spanish word for friendship.

On the left: Estados Unidos Mexicanos
On the right: United States of America

President Richard Nixon and Mexico's President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz shake hands at a ceremony on the Mexico side of the Rio Grande after dedicating the Amistad Dam, in background. September 8, 1969. © Bettmann/CORBIS

Fun Facts:

Famous residents of Del Rio include
  • Jessica Alba(actress)
  • Todd Hays(Olympic bobsledder silver medalist)
  • Shawn Michaels(Pro wrestler)
  • Radney Foster(Country Music singer/songwriter)

Films shot in Del Rio include
  • 1951 Arrowhead - Charlton Heston
  • 959 John Wayne's The Alamo
  • 1993 El Mariachi, Robert Rodriguez
  • 1995 Desparado, Robert Rodriguez, Antonio Banderas, Selma Hayek
  • 1996 From Dusk Till Dawn, Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantin
  • 2007 No Country for Old Men


  1. im from del rio too and i loved this blog :D

  2. I live in California and I was back in my home town of Del Rio for a weeks visit and had so much fun going down Memory Lane.. with my cousins.. Susie

  3. I have family in Del Rio .I would visit almost every summer and would go swimming every day at the park.Those were the best of times. Ramiro

  4. hey i googled my own name and saw you. Just letting u know im Mike Beda as well. youre not alone